Bike to Farmers Market Week 2012
Thursday, August 23, 2012
“Farmers Markets are an important part of the community and they promote healthy eating and healthy lifestyles,” said Sarah Lester, Markets Coordinator at Farm Fresh Rhode Island. “Many markets are located directly on bike paths and we want Rhode Islanders to get some fresh air with their fresh food. We are hoping to get people to ride to the markets as much as possible!”
This is the first year of the event and 10 markets will have official Bike to Market activities, plus a few other markets will participate informally, Lester said. She hopes that over 20 markets will participate next year.
Grand celebration August 23
The grand celebration will be on Thursday, August 23. Bike to the Amory Park Farmers Market from 4pm-7pm and get your bike tuned-up by the WRWC Red Shed Bike Shop mechanics for $5, have your bike valeted by Recycle-a-Bike, enjoy educational tastings of smoothies made by the Healthy Foods, Healthy Families program’s bike-powered smoothie maker, and donate old bikes to support WRWC bike programs. The first 10 bikers will receive a voucher for one hour of free Open Shop time at the Recycle-A-Bike community shop.
There will also be various celebratory activities at the following markets around Providence: Downtown Farmers Market on Friday, August 24, Broad Street and the Hope Street Farmers Markets on Saturday, August 25, and the Slater Park Market on Sunday, August 26. For more details about the activities, go to the Farm Fresh Rhode Island blog.
On Aquidneck Island, bike to the Aquidneck Growers Market in Middletown on Saturday, August 25 from 9am-1pm. Gift certificates from two local bike shops will be raffled off to bikers at each of these markets. Bike Newport will also have bike valet and bike safety information at the Wednesday AGM Market in Newport.
“There are a few markets that have worked with Recycle-a-Bike in the past to set-up bike valet and this decreases car traffic/parking issues around the market, is a good source of exercise, and generally less damaging on the environment,” Lester said. “A win-win-win! We wanted to take a week and create these positive impacts around the state.”
With help from the Rhode Island Department of Transportation you can find maps of all of the RI bike paths online to plan your routes for the week. Additional farmers markets that are located just off of bike paths include: Woonsocket Market, West Warwick Farmers Market
“We want people to know that Providence is becoming a more biker-friendly city every day and that bikers will be supported in our community,” said Jenna Yu, Program Director at Recycle-A-Bike. “We also want to shed light on to the local urban farmers and small businesses who tirelessly toil to provide tasty, healthy goods to our neighborhoods and especially those who do it by bicycle.”
“I'm excited that there are so many groups willing to work with us to make this event a reality for its first year,” Lester said. “It has really been a team effort and will hopefully only grow! It just makes sense to couple good food with smart transportation! Plus, more and more urban farmers are biking their produce to markets, setting an amazing example for the rest of us.”
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